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  1. Jinap S, Ilya-Nur AR, Tang SC, Hajeb P, Shahrim K, Khairunnisak M
    Appetite, 2010 Oct;55(2):238-44.
    PMID: 20600418 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2010.06.007
    The shrimp paste called belacan is a traditional umami taste condiment extensively used in Malaysia that is rich in glutamate and 5'-nucleotides. The aim of this study was to determine the concentration of glutamate and 5'-nucleotides of various types of foods prepared with belacan and to measure their sensory attributes. The concentration of free glutamic acid found in different brands of belacan was 180-530mg/100g and in local dishes 601-4207mg/100g. The total amount of 5'-nucleotides in belacan samples ranged from 0.85 to 42.25μg/g. A Quantitative Descriptive Analysis (QDA) using a list of 17 sensory attributes showed a good correlation between belacan concentration in the final food and a range of positive sensory attributes, except for bitter, sweet, sour taste and astringency. Belacan also contains bitter, sweet and sour compounds that change the positive attributes of belacan at higher concentrations. The highest aroma attributes were linked to nasi goreng belacan (belacan fried rice) while the highest flavour attributes were found in sambal belacan. There was a 32 folds significant increase of umami attributes with the addition of belacan to final foods. The optimum amount of belacan was 0.45% for asam pedas (tamarind flavoured dish with belacan), 18% for sambal belacan (chilli belacan), 1.5-2.5% for kangkong goreng belacan (stir fried water convolous with belacan), and 2% for nasi goreng belacan.
  2. Jinap S, Hajeb P
    Appetite, 2010 Aug;55(1):1-10.
    PMID: 20470841 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2010.05.002
    This article reviews application of glutamate in food and its benefits and role as one of the common food ingredients used. Monosodium glutamate is one of the most abundant naturally occurring amino acids which frequently added as a flavor enhancer. It produced a unique taste that cannot be provided by other basic taste (saltiness, sourness, sweetness and bitterness), referred to as a fifth taste (umami). Glutamate serves some functions in the body as well, serving as an energy source for certain tissues and as a substrate for glutathione synthesis. Glutamate has the potential to enhance food intake in older individuals and dietary free glutamate evoked a visceral sensation from the stomach, intestine and portal vein. Small quantities of glutamate used in combination with a reduced amount of table salt during food preparation allow for far less salt to be used during and after cooking. Because glutamate is one of the most intensely studied food ingredients in the food supply and has been found safe, the Joint Expert Committee on Food Additives of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization and World Health Organization placed it in the safest category for food additives. Despite a widespread belief that glutamate can elicit asthma, migraine headache and Chinese Restaurant Syndrome (CRS), there are no consistent clinical data to support this claim. In addition, findings from the literature indicate that there is no consistent evidence to suggest that individuals may be uniquely sensitive to glutamate.
    Matched MeSH terms: Appetite
  3. Hatami M, Mohd Taib MN, Jamaluddin R, Abu Saad H, Djazayery A
    Appetite, 2013 Jan;60(1):27-32.
    PMID: 23103548 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2012.10.014
    OBJECTIVE: Several studies indicated that techniques to change body weight and appearance were prevalent and different among adolescents. The aim of the study, therefore, was to assess differences in frequency and type of body change techniques used among adolescents by sex and body weight status.

    METHODS: A sample of 758 adolescents aged 12-18 years were recruited from private and public schools in Tehran. Information about socio-demographic background and body change techniques were collected via a self-administered questionnaire.

    RESULTS: A high percentage of adolescents used body change techniques frequently to alter their body appearance. Girls changed normal eating pattern significantly (p=0.007) to lose weight more frequently than boys while boys used this method significantly (p=0.01) to gain weight more frequently than girls. Overweight/obese adolescents exercised significantly to change muscle size (p=0.03) and changed normal diet to lose weight (p<0.001) more frequently than normal weight adolescents. The relation between sex and body weight status with body change techniques (p<0.0) implied that male and female adolescents especially overweight/obese adolescents were frequently trying to change their body appearance.

    CONCLUSION: Significant differences existed in using body change techniques according to sex and body weight status and these should be considered in obesity prevention programs for adolescents.

  4. Gan WY, Mohd Nasir MT, Zalilah MS, Hazizi AS
    Appetite, 2012 Dec;59(3):679-87.
    PMID: 22885453 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2012.08.002
    The mechanism linking biopsychosocial factors to disordered eating among university students is not well understood especially among Malaysians. This study aimed to examine the mediating role of psychological distress in the relationships between biopsychosocial factors and disordered eating among Malaysian university students. A self-administered questionnaire measured self-esteem, body image, social pressures to be thin, weight-related teasing, psychological distress, and disordered eating in 584 university students (59.4% females and 40.6% males). Body weight and height were measured. Structural equation modeling analysis revealed that the partial mediation model provided good fit to the data. Specifically, the relationships between self-esteem and weight-related teasing with disordered eating were mediated by psychological distress. In contrast, only direct relationships between body weight status, body image, and social pressures to be thin with disordered eating were found and were not mediated by psychological distress. Furthermore, multigroup analyses indicated that the model was equivalent for both genders but not for ethnic groups. There was a negative relationship between body weight status and psychological distress for Chinese students, whereas this was not the case among Malay students. Intervention and prevention programs on psychological distress may be beneficial in reducing disordered eating among Malaysian university students.
  5. Saeedi P, Mohd Nasir MT, Hazizi AS, Vafa MR, Rahimi Foroushani A
    Appetite, 2013 Jan;60(1):20-26.
    PMID: 23017466 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2012.09.011
    The aim of this study was to assess nutritional supplement use among fitness club participants in Tehran, Iran. A cross sectional study was conducted in 24 fitness clubs throughout the city of Tehran, Iran. A total of 1625 fitness club participants were recruited to participate in this study. They were asked to complete a self-administered pre-tested questionnaire. Descriptive statistics and chi-square test were performed to determine the characteristics of participants, reasons for supplement use, sources of information and also the influential advisors regarding nutritional supplement use. A high prevalence rate of nutritional supplement use (66.7%) was reported. Overall, multivitamin-mineral (43.8%) and iron tablets (30.5%) were the common nutritional supplements used and only a small number of participants used illegal substances (0.5%). Younger participants were more likely to use ergogenic aids, whereas, older participants were more likely to use vitamin D. Males were more likely than females to use creatine and amino acids, whereas, iron tablets and mint water were more common among females. Also, males were more likely to use nutritional supplements for increasing energy, whereas, females were more likely to use nutritional supplements for nutritional deficiencies. In conclusion, a high prevalence rate of nutritional supplement use was seen among participants.
  6. Mohd Nasir MT, Norimah AK, Hazizi AS, Nurliyana AR, Loh SH, Suraya I
    Appetite, 2012 Apr;58(2):525-30.
    PMID: 22265752 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2012.01.007
    This study aimed to determine the relationship between child feeding practices, food habits, and anthropometric indicators with cognitive performance of preschoolers aged 4-6 years in Peninsular Malaysia (n=1933). Parents were interviewed on socio-demographic background, nutrition knowledge, child feeding practices and food habits. Height and weight of the preschoolers were measured; BMI-for-age, weight-for-age and height-for-age were determined. Cognitive performance was assessed using Raven's Colored Progressive Matrices. The mean monthly household income was RM3610 and 59.6% of parents attained secondary education. Thirty-three percent of parents had good knowledge on nutrition, 39% satisfactory and 28% poor. For child feeding practices, perceived responsibility had the highest mean score (M=3.99, SD=0.72), while perceived child weight had the lowest (M=2.94, SD=0.38). The prevalence of possible risk of overweight, being overweight, and obesity were 3.9%, 7.9% and 8.1%, respectively, whereas the prevalence of underweight and stunting were 8.0% and 8.4%, respectively. Breakfast was the second most frequently skipped meal (16.8%) after dinner (18.1%). The mean cognitive score was 103.5 (SD=14.4). Height-for-age and consumption of dinner were found to contribute significantly towards cognitive performance after controlling for socio-demographic background and parent's nutrition knowledge.
  7. Taib MN, Shariff ZM, Wesnes KA, Saad HA, Sariman S
    Appetite, 2012 Feb;58(1):81-7.
    PMID: 21986189 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2011.09.004
    Changes in blood glucose are hypothesized to influence cognitive performance and these changes can be affected by certain nutrients. This double-blind 4-period cross-over study evaluated the effects of a slow-release modified sucrose (isomaltulose) in combination with a high concentration of lactose on cognitive performance of 5-6 year old children. Thirty children received a standard growing upmilk (Std GUM), reformulated growing up milk (Reform GUM), standard growing up milk with lactose-isomaltulose (Iso GUM), and a standard glucose drink (Glucose). The CDR System, a computerised cognitive assessment system, was used to assess various measures of attention and memory of the children at baseline (T=0), 60 (T=1), 120 (T=2), and 180 (T=3) minutes following the intake of test products. Overall, there was a decline in performance over the morning on almost every cognitive task. Children showed better attention following consumption of Iso GUM compared to Std GUM but attention was not significantly different than Reform GUM and glucose. Also, Iso GUM conferred a beneficial effect over both Reform GUM and glucose on sensitivity index of numeric working memory with no difference observed between Iso GUM and Std GUM. Surprisingly, glucose group showed lowest decline in the sensitivity index of spatial working memory and highest speed in picture recognition, although the latter was significantly better than Reform GUM only. For speed of spatial working memory, Reform GUM had the lowest decline but was significantly different only with Std GUM. There was, however, no significant difference among conditions for continuity of attention, speed of numeric working memory and picture recognition sensitivity. Despite the small sample size, the findings are intriguing as carbohydrate composition seems to influence some aspects of cognitive performance such as attention and memory. However, further studies are needed to confirm these findings.
  8. Dazeley P, Houston-Price C
    Appetite, 2015 Jan;84:1-6.
    PMID: 25218879 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2014.08.040
    Activities that engage young children with the sensory properties of foods are popular with nursery schools, despite the lack of evidence for their efficacy in increasing children's consumption of healthy foods. This study provides the first empirical exploration of the effectiveness of a non-taste sensory activity program in a nursery school setting. Ninety-two children aged between 12 and 36 months were allocated either to an intervention group, who took part in looking, listening, feeling and smelling activities with unusual fruits and vegetables every day for 4 weeks, or to a non-intervention control group. In a subsequent mealtime taste test, children touched and tasted more of the vegetables to which they had been familiarized in their playtime activities than of a matched set of non-exposed foods. The results demonstrate that hands-on activities with unfamiliar fruits and vegetables can enhance children's willingness to taste these foods, and confirm the potential for such activities to support healthy eating initiatives.
  9. Hatami M, Taib MN, Jamaluddin R, Saad HA, Djazayery A, Chamari M, et al.
    Appetite, 2014 Nov;82:194-201.
    PMID: 25068789 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2014.07.026
    This study investigated the determinants of overweight/obesity in adolescents. A cross-sectional survey was carried out on 1157 adolescents. Weight and height were measured. Information on socio-economic status (SES), dietary intakes, physical activity, and sedentary behaviours were collected by a self-administered questionnaire. Binary and multivariate binary logistic regressions were used to obtain the relationships and odds-ratios, respectively. The prevalence of overweight and obesity was higher among adolescents in low- or high-income families, adolescents whose mothers worked out of home, adolescents whose parents were both overweight, adolescents who watched a lot of TV or had excessive energy intake, adolescents with lower physical activity or lower intake of dietary fibre, those who skipped breakfast ≥ 4 times per week, and those with low and high fat intake. However, multiple logistic regression analysis showed that only energy intake was associated with increased odds and vegetables and fibre intake were associated with a reduction in the odds of being overweight (all p<0.05). Adolescents from middle SES showed a lower risk of overweight/obesity than low and high SES due to better dietary intakes and less sedentary behaviours. Therefore, in overweight/obesity prevention programs, adolescents with determined risk factors from families with low and high SES should receive attention.
  10. Gan WY, Mohd Nasir MT, Zalilah MS, Hazizi AS
    Appetite, 2011 Jun;56(3):778-83.
    PMID: 21435366 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2011.03.005
    This study aimed to examine the role of psychological distress in the relationships between sociocultural influences (social pressure to be thin and weight teasing) and disordered eating. Data were collected from 584 university students (59.4% females and 40.6% males), aged 18-24 years old (M=20.6, SD=1.4), selected from four universities in the Klang Valley, Malaysia. Participants completed four standardized questionnaires which measured social pressure to be thin, weight-related teasing, psychological distress and disordered eating. A good fit structural equation modeling (SEM) model was developed for both sexes. For males, the SEM model revealed that sociocultural influences showed an indirect effect on disordered eating through psychological distress. For females, the model showed an indirect effect of sociocultural influences on disordered eating through psychological distress, as well as a direct effect of sociocultural influences on disordered eating. In conclusion, psychological distress mediated the relationships between sociocultural influences and disordered eating in both males and females. Our results suggest that disordered eating intervention programs on reducing psychological distress in university students may be beneficial.
  11. Fournier T, Tibère L, Laporte C, Mognard E, Ismail MN, Sharif SP, et al.
    Appetite, 2016 12 01;107:362-371.
    PMID: 27521166 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2016.08.009
    The Malaysian society is experiencing and coping with a fast modernization process, which is characterized by a rapid urbanization and rural exodus, an important reduction of the size of households, and the emergence of a new middle class. The Malaysian Food Barometer launched in 2013 has provided better understanding how these macro issues have affected the lifestyles and especially the food habits of the Malaysians. The country has indeed undergone a transition period from under-nutrition to over-nutrition in a few decades, with the prevalence of overweight and obesity having markedly and rapidly increased. A quantitative survey (n = 2000), elaborated from a qualitative preliminary phase, was carried out with the aim of analyzing the transformation of food habits at the national level. The present article focuses on the BMI issue in Malaysia, and investigates its relationships with the socio-demographic variables of the population, as well as their eating patterns. The mean BMI is 23.64 kg/m2, with 9.5% of the sample being obese, and 22% overweight. Strong statistical associations have been identified between BMI and independent variables such as size of the living area, ethnicity, level of education, gender, and age. Contrary to general believe, overweight and obesity were neither associated with the number of food intakes taken per day (including snacks) nor with the frequency of eating out. Nonetheless, obesity is over-represented in people who have dissonant eating behaviors, i.e. who declare having fewer food intakes a day (food norms) than they do actually (food practices). This process testifies that the Malaysians are experiencing a "food transition", which is linked with socio-economic development.
  12. Yang WY, Burrows T, MacDonald-Wicks L, Williams LT, Collins CE, Chee WSS
    Appetite, 2018 06 01;125:90-97.
    PMID: 29408380 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2018.01.037
    BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Given the increasing prevalence of childhood obesity in Malaysia, examination of family environmental factors is warranted. Reviews from developed countries report inconsistent findings on the relationship between parental-child feeding practices and child weight-related health outcomes. The current study aimed to examine parent-child feeding practices by familial-child characteristics in Malaysia.

    MATERIALS AND METHOD: The Family Diet Study was conducted with urban Malay families and included a child aged 8-12 years and their main carer(s). Seven domains of parent-child feeding practices were assessed using the child feeding questionnaire and familial demographics, including socio-economic status, child anthropometry and dietary intake were collected. Inferential statistics were used to explore the relationships between variables.

    RESULTS: Of the 315 families enrolled, 236 completed all measures, with the majority of parent-reporters being mothers (n = 182). One-third of the children were classified as overweight/obese. Three domains of parent-child feeding practices had median scores of 4.0 out of 5.0 [concern about child overweight (CCO) (Interquartile range (IQR): 3.3, 4.7); pressure-to-eat (PTE) (IQR: 3.3, 4.5) and food monitoring (IQR: 3.0, 5.0)]. The domain of 'perceived child overweight' was positively associated with child age (r = 0.45, p 

  13. Koo HC, Lee CL, Nur Hidayah AS, Nurain Hazwani AR
    Appetite, 2018 04 01;123:256-263.
    PMID: 29309853 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2018.01.002
    Whole grains play an important role in regulating body weight. However, interventions aimed to increase whole grains consumption have had limited impact on body mass index for age z-score (BAZ) due to insufficient understanding of knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAP) toward whole grains. This survey aimed to evaluate whole grains KAP among schoolchildren, as well as to investigate the associations of whole grains KAP with BAZ among the schoolchildren in Negeri Sembilan, Malaysia. This cross-sectional survey was conducted among 380 schoolchildren aged 9-11 years, cluster sampled from six randomly selected schools. Data were collected through a validated self-administered guided questionnaire. Body weight and height were measured. A majority of the schoolchildren had normal body weight (56.6%), moderate whole grains knowledge (42.6%), as well as neutral attitudes (66.1%) and poor practices (58.9%) toward whole grains consumption. Significant positive associations were found between knowledge and attitudes (r = 0.337; p 
  14. Shukri M, Jones F, Conner M
    Appetite, 2018 04 01;123:225-232.
    PMID: 29294321 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2017.12.027
    There is increasing evidence to suggest that work-family conflict is implicated in poor eating patterns. Yet, the underlying mechanism remains unexplored. The objectives of the present study were to demonstrate the interplay between work-family conflict, eating style, and unhealthy eating, and to test whether body mass index (BMI) and its interactions further explicate the relationships. In this study, 586 Malaysian adults (normal weight n = 437, overweight n = 149) completed a questionnaire, which included demographic variables, work-family scales, eating style measures, namely, restrained, emotional or external eating and reported food intake. As hypothesized, results showed that family-to-work conflict (FWC), emotional eating and external eating were positively related to unhealthy food consumption. In addition, emotional eating was found to moderate the impact of FCW on eating. These findings are consistent with research that has revealed emotional eating can indeed increase the positive association between stress such as conflict and unhealthy food choices. However, we found no clear support for the interactive effects of BMI. Our research builds on the findings of existing research as it demonstrates the role of eating style in explaining the association between work-family conflict and unhealthy eating. This conclusion has potential implications for appropriate interventions and calls for the enhancement of various policies to tackle obesity and other health problems.
  15. Teo PS, van Langeveld AWB, Pol K, Siebelink E, de Graaf C, Yan SW, et al.
    Appetite, 2018 06 01;125:32-41.
    PMID: 29366933 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2018.01.020
    Three recent studies showed that taste intensity signals nutrient content. However, current data reflects only the food patterns in Western societies. No study has yet been performed in Asian culture. The Malaysian cuisine represents a mixture of Malay, Chinese and Indian foods. This study aimed to investigate the associations between taste intensity and nutrient content in commonly consumed Dutch (NL) and Malaysian (MY) foods. Perceived intensities of sweetness, sourness, bitterness, umami, saltiness and fat sensation were assessed for 469 Dutch and 423 Malaysian commonly consumed foods representing about 83% and 88% of an individual's average daily energy intake in each respective country. We used a trained Dutch (n = 15) and Malaysian panel (n = 20) with quantitative sensory Spectrum™ 100-point rating scales and reference solutions, R1 (13-point), R2 (33-point) and R3 (67-point). Dutch and Malaysian foods had relatively low mean sourness and bitterness (
  16. Shagar PS, Donovan CL, Loxton N, Boddy J, Harris N
    Appetite, 2019 03 01;134:59-68.
    PMID: 30586595 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2018.12.025
    Despite growing research investigating prevalence rates of BD among Malaysian women, there has been limited research conducted in Malaysia with respect to factors contributing to its development and consequences. This study tested a subsection of the Tripartite Influence Model, investigating whether sociocultural influences (family, peers, media) lead to thin ideal internalization, which in turn lead to body dissatisfaction (BD) and subsequently restrained eating and bulimic behaviours in both Australian and Malaysian women. Participants were 421 Australian and 399 Malaysian female emerging adults aged between 18 and 25 years, (M = 20.76; SD = 2.86) who completed questionnaires assessing sociocultural influences, thin ideal internalization, body dissatisfaction, restrained eating and bulimic behaviours. The model, largely supported in both cultures, had two points of difference. For Malaysian but not Australian women, family influence was significantly linked with internalization of the thin ideal. Although BD was significantly linked with restrained eating as predicted for Australian women (albeit rather weakly), it was not significantly linked with restrained eating for Malaysian women. The striking similarity of results across both cultures, suggests that Western body ideals, with their corresponding negative sequelae, have infiltrated the collectivist and developing nation of Malaysia.
  17. Ang CS, Chan NN, Singh L
    Appetite, 2019 05 01;136:80-85.
    PMID: 30685315 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2019.01.019
    This study aims to investigate how the distinction between animals that humans consume (AHCs) and pet animals influence meat eaters' and non-meat eaters' perceived mind attribution on animals and moral disengagement. Following this, a two-way mixed ANOVA with repeated measures on the type of animals being slaughtered and type of eaters was conducted. For meat-eaters, perceived mental capacity ratings for AHCs were lower than pet animals. For non-meat eaters, the difference between these animals was negligible. In addition, meat eaters had higher levels of moral disengagement in comparison to non-meat eaters. Further analysis showed that meat eaters who reported lower perceived mental capacities of AHCs appeared to feel such animals were more edible and were less likely to perceive killing them for food as morally wrong. Moral disengagement was also negatively associated with mental capacity of AHCs as food, suggesting that there was a higher moral disengagement among meat eaters who tend to view AHCs as lacking in mental capacities.
  18. Mohd Nor ND, Houston-Price C, Harvey K, Methven L
    Appetite, 2020 Oct 10;157:104991.
    PMID: 33049340 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2020.104991
    Low consumption of vegetables in children is a concern around the world, hence approaches aimed at increasing intake are highly relevant. Previous studies have shown that repeated taste exposure is an effective strategy to increase vegetable acceptance. However, few studies have examined the effect of repeated taste exposure on children varying in bitter taste sensitivity. This study investigated the influence of taste genotypes and phenotypes on the effects of repeated taste exposure to a Brassica vegetable. 172 preschool children aged 3-5 years were recruited into this study. Turnip was selected as the target vegetable and parents completed a questionnaire to ensure unfamiliarity. During the intervention, children were exposed to steamed-pureed turnip for 10 days (once/day). Intake and liking were measured before, during and after the intervention, and a follow-up was done 3 months post-intervention. Taste genotypes (TAS2R38 and gustin (CA6) genotypes) and taste phenotypes (PROP taster status and fungiform papillae density) were determined. There was a significant effect of exposure shown by significant increases in intake (p 
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